Texas

Report

Early Findings From the Family Self-Sufficiency Program Evaluation

March, 2019
Nandita Verma, Stephen Freedman, Betsy L. Tessler, Stephen Nuñez, Barbara Fink

This first national randomized controlled trial of the Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program — the main federal strategy to help housing voucher recipients make progress toward economic mobility — examined program implementation, participants’ engagement, and impacts on labor force participation and benefits receipt in the first 24 months of this five-year program.

Brief

Using Behavioral Strategies to Increase Initial Child Support Payments in Texas

April, 2019
Mary Farrell, Carly Morrison

This behavioral science-based intervention was designed to increase the percentage of employed parents who made child support payments during the first months after a new order was established, before employer income withholding went into effect. It did increase the percentage who made payments in the first month.

Report

Final Impacts of the Next Generation of Subsidized Employment Programs

May, 2018
Bret Barden, Randall Juras, Cindy Redcross, Mary Farrell, Dan Bloom

“Transitional jobs” are temporary, subsidized jobs meant to teach participants basic work skills or help them get started with an employer. The Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration tested seven such programs for people recently released from prison or low-income parents behind on child support. This report presents the final impact results.

Working Paper
October, 2018

This paper reports outcomes for community college students who took modularized, self-paced, computer-assisted, remedial math courses with outcomes of students who took “traditional” (that is, mostly lecture-based) classes. Modularized courses were no more (or less) effective than traditional courses at helping students complete their developmental math requirements.

Brief

Interim Findings on Developmental Students’ Progress to College Math with the Dana Center Mathematics Pathways

July, 2018

This community college reform directs remedial math students into accelerated course sequences focused on statistics or quantitative reasoning, depending on their programs of study. In a random assignment evaluation, students in the pathways group are enrolling in and passing college-level math at a higher rate than students in traditional courses.

Report

Findings from the Changing Attitudes and Motivation in Parolees Pilot Study

May, 2018

A training program for parole officers in Dallas, Denver, and Des Moines sought to address the persistently high recidivism rates among individuals leaving prison. This study’s results show that officers generally already knew many of the curriculum’s concepts, and changes to their practices were limited.

Brief

Lessons from the BIAS Project

November, 2017

In child support programs, parents must often make complicated decisions with little information in a highly emotional context. The BIAS project, which applied behavioral insights to human services programs, worked with three states to design eight tests focusing on child support order modifications and collection of payments.

Brief

New Approaches to Serving the Lowest-Skilled Students at Community Colleges in Texas and Beyond

October, 2017

Faced with many applicants with very low math skills, community colleges are responding with a variety of reforms, including restricting developmental courses to students with high-school-level skills. This brief provides context for the policy changes and describes the alternatives two colleges offer to those who don’t make the cut.

Report

Highlights from the Jobs Plus Pilot Program Evaluation

September, 2017
Betsy L. Tessler, Nandita Verma, Jonathan Bigelow, M. Victoria Quiroz-Becerra, Kristin P. Frescoln, William M. Rohe, Michael D. Webb, Amy T. Khare, Mark L. Joseph, Emily K. Miller

Jobs Plus promotes employment among public housing residents through employment services, rent rule changes that provide incentives to work, and community support for work. Within the first 18 months, all nine public housing agencies in this evaluation had begun structuring their programs, building partnerships, and implementing the model’s core components.

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